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Planning Process

Students working with post-it notes on whiteboard

Programming activity began in the spring of 2015, with data gathering and campus input from students, faculty, staff, and alumnae and continued through the summer and fall of 2015.

For more information, see Program Committee Engagement Schedule Fall 2015.

The Library Design Committee, chaired by President McCartney is working with the team of Maya Lin Studio + Shepley Bulfinch to ensure that the college’s design and aesthetic ambitions for The new Neilson Library are realized in the context of its program requirements as well as the campus as a whole. The overall design was shared with the campus community in the fall of 2016. Neilson closed for construction in the summer of 2017 until the completion of the project - expected in 2020. Most of Neilson's collections are housed in the new Five College Library Annex in nearby Hatfield for the duration of the project. Books are brought to campus as requested throughout the construction period. Young Library is the interim hub for library services and Special Collections. Library resources and services are also provided at Hillyer Art Library and Josten Library for the Performing Arts. 


Committees & Working Groups

These committees contributed to the planning and design of the library.

Library Program Committee

Charge: To identify and prioritize such building elements as user spaces, library services, physical collections, and academic support services and centers, and make recommendations to the president and board, who will make final decisions.

  • Katherine Rowe, Provost and Dean of Faculty; chair
  • Nancy Bradbury, Professor of English Language and Literature; Libraries Feasibility Committee
  • Betsy Carpenter, Development and Campaign Director
  • Patrick Coby, Professor of Government
  • Charlie Conant, Senior Project Manager, Facilities Management; liaison to architect
  • Deborah Duncan ’77, Trustee
  • Nalini Easwar, Professor of Physics
  • John Eue, Associate Vice President for Public Affairs
  • Sarah Evans ’18
  • Elizabeth Eveillard, Chair, Board of Trustees, ex officio
  • Madeleine Fackler ’80, Trustee
  • Barbara Kellum, Professor of Art
  • Kimberly Kono, Associate Professor of East Asian Languages and Literatures
  • Tom Laughner, Director of Educational Technology Services
  • Donna Lisker, Dean of the College and Vice President for Campus Life
  • Christopher Loring, Director of Libraries
  • Steve Moga, Assistant Professor of Landscape Studies
  • Roger Mosier, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management
  • Beth Myers, Director of Special Collections
  • Cornelia Pearsall, Professor of English Language and Literature
  • Judith Pelham ’67, Trustee
  • Barbara Polowy, Head of Hillyer Art Library; staffing the committee
  • Danielle Ramdath, Associate Dean of the Faculty
  • Dano Weisbord, Director of Campus Sustainability and Space Planning
  • Maria Wood AC

See Documents & Reports for an archive of documents produced during the planning phase of the project.

Library Design Committee

Charge: The Library Design Committee will work with the team of Maya Lin Studio + Shepley Bulfinch to ensure that the college’s design and aesthetic ambitions for the new Neilson Library are realized in the context of its program requirements as well as the campus as a whole. 

The committee will guide input from the Smith community to the design process and provide formal feedback to the Maya Lin + Shepley Bulfinch team at milestones throughout the design process. In addition, the committee will be responsible for maintaining alignment between the program, design and budget. 

  • Kathleen McCartney, President; chair
  • Deborah Berger ’86, Trustee
  • Nancy Bradbury, Professor of English Language and Literature
  • Elizabeth Mugar Eveillard ’69, Chair, Board of Trustees, ex officio
  • Michael Howard, Vice President for Finance and Administration
  • Barbara Kellum, Professor of Art
  • Christopher Loring, Director of Libraries
  • Steve Moga, Assistant Professor of Landscape Studies
  • Roger Mosier, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management
  • Susan Novick ’81, Trustee
  • Judith Pelham ’67, Trustee
  • Beth Raffeld, Senior Vice President for Alumnae Relations and Development
  • Katherine Rowe, Provost and Dean of the Faculty

Architect Selection Committee

Charge: To recommend a slate of potential architects to the Buildings and Grounds Committee of the Board of Trustees.

  • Kathleen McCartney, President; Chair
  • Sanford Belden, Trustee
  • Nancy Bradbury, Professor of English Language and Literature; Libraries Feasibility Committee
  • Charles Conant, Senior Project Manager, Facilities Management
  • John Davis, Alice Pratt Brown Professor of Art
  • Elizabeth Mugar Eveillard ’69, Chair, Board of Trustees, ex officio
  • Patricia DiBartolo, Professor of Psychology and Director of the Science Center
  • Andrew Guswa, Engineering
  • Michael Howard, Vice President for Finance and Administration
  • Christopher Loring, Director of Libraries
  • Roger Mosier, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management
  • Lucy Mule, Associate Professor of Education and Child Study
  • Beth Myers, Director of Special Collections
  • Lois Perelson-Gross ’83, Trustee
  • Beth Raffeld, Senior Vice President for Alumnae Relations and Development
  • Katherine Rowe, Provost and Dean of Faculty
  • Frazer Ward, Associate Professor of Art History and Dean of the Junior Class
  • Tom Bernard, Director of Special Projects, staff support 

Working Groups

Charge: To identify and prioritize such building elements as user spaces, library services, physical collections, and academic support services and centers, and make recommendations to the president and board, who will make final decisions. Members. 

Program Committee-Led Working Groups

Vision

Nancy Bradbury, Professor of English Language and Literature; Betty Eveillard, Chair, Board of Trustees; Christopher Loring, Director of the Libraries; Steve Moga, Assistant Professor of Landscape Studies; Katherine Rowe, Provost and Dean of Faculty (convener)

Collections

Patrick Coby, Professor of Government; Deborah Duncan '77, Chair, Board of Trustees; Barbara Kellum, Professor, Art Department; Rob O'Connell, Director of Discovery & Access; Beth Myers, Director of Special Collections (convener); Danielle Ramdath, Associate Dean of the Faculty; Amy Rhodes, Associate Professor, Geosciences; Pamela Skinner, Head of Collection Development; Maria Wood, Ada Comstock student

User Study Spaces

Sika Berger, User Experience Librarian; Sarah Evans '18; Kim Kono, Associate Professor of East Asian Languages and Literature; Brendan O'Connell, Instructional Technology Librarian; Barbara Polowy, Head of the Hillyer Art Library (convener); Maria Wood, Ada Comstock student

Building Co-Occupants

Charlie Conant, Senior Project Manager, Facilities Management; Nalini Easwar, Professor of Physics; Sarah Evans '18; Madeleine Fackler '80, Trustee; Anne Houston, Director for Teaching, Learning & Research; Elisa Lanzi, Director of Digital Strategies & Services; Thomas C. Laughner, Director of Educational Technology Information (convener); Christopher Loring, Director of the Libraries; Roger Mosier, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management; Cornelia Pearsall, Professor of English Language and Literature; Katherine Rowe, Provost and Dean of Faculty; Dano Weisbord, Director of Campus Sustainability and Space Planning

Teaching/Seminar/Instruction Spaces and Technology

Martin Antonetti, Rare Books and Marketing/Outreach Director; Betsy Carpenter, Development and Campaign Director; Floyd Cheung, Associate Professor of English; Yasmin Chin Eisenhauer, Instructional Technologist; Anne Houston, Director for Teaching, Learning & Research (convener); Donna Lisker, Dean of the College and Vice President for Campus Life (subbed as needed by Tina Azengle, Senior Program Administrator to support student engagement); Miriam Neptune, Digital Scholarship Librarian; Judith Pelham '67, Trustee

Sustainability

Steve Moga, Assistant Professor of Landscape Studies; Roger Mosier, Associate Vice President for Facilities Management; Janet Spongberg, Josten Circulation Coordinator; Dano Weisbord, Director of Campus Sustainability and Space Planning (convener)

Library-Led Working Groups

Service Model(s)

Anne Houston, Director for Teaching, Learning & Research (convener); Reese Julian, Circulation Manager; Elisa Lanzi, Director of Digital Strategies & Services; Thomas C. Laughner, Director o f Educational Technology Information; Christopher Loring, Director of the Libraries; Beth Myers, Director of Special Collections; Rob O'Connell, Director of Discovery & Access

Special Collections

Martin Antonetti, Curator of Rare Books; Rosetta Cohen, Sylvia Dlugasch Bauman Professor of Education & American Studies; Maida Goodwin, Collections Archivist; Beth Myers, Director of Special Collections (convener); Rob O'Connell, Director of Discovery & Access; Nanci Young, College Archivist

Staff Spaces/Functions

Anne Houston, Director for Teaching, Learning & Research; Elisa Lanzi, Director of Digital Strategies & Services; Christopher Loring, Director of the Libraries; Beth Myers, Director of Special Collections; Rob O'Connell, Director of Discovery & Access (convener); Barbara Polowy, Head of the Hillyer Art Library